Why DIY Home Security Makes Sense

Installing a security system is often portrayed as a daunting and expensive task, but the Internet of Things (IoT) is changing that. Smart home technology enables individuals to establish a network of security devices that are controllable and affordable. Installing security systems usually require hired professionals to install them, which is often costly and intimidating. DIY security installation provides home owners with the power to customize security systems easily to fit their respective needs.

The most beneficial aspect of DIY installation is that it is extremely cheap in comparison to hiring professionals. Smart home security devices allow users to purchase devices as they see fit. This means that a security system can start with only a few devices and be built up overtime, allowing individuals to build a secure home on a budget. With a professional installation, the user is required to purchase an expensive and complex system, which they might not even need. In addition to this, professional systems usually have very expensive installation fees. IoT devices are very inexpensive; they can be purchased and installed easily at without complicated procedures.

With internet-enabled security devices, the user has complete control over their security system while they are at home as well as when they are away, which is a feature that professional systems don’t offer. Another DIY benefit is the ability to completely customize and alter security networks at the user’s convenience. Devices can be added or removed from a security system with ease. Home owners also have the ability to reinstall any security device in an alternative location within their home environment. Professionally installed systems simply do not offer this luxury. Once a system is installed in this fashion, there are essentially no customization options. This is especially inconvenient if someone decides to move into a new house or wants to move their security system to a new area in their home. DIY security systems can be transported to various environments and can be installed with minimum difficulty.

When it comes to personally installing a security system, there are some extremely powerful tools to assist in building an integrated network of IoT devices. The ConnectSense Wireless Security System and Wireless Motion Sensor are very effective in keeping a home secure. The Security Sensor can monitor doors, windows, cabinets, and more in any home. The Motion Sensor is able to track any motion that occurs within a given environment. Each of these sensors is able to notify home owners if there are any changes in their environment before it becomes a problem. These ConnectSense sensors are some of the many robust smart devices that can be utilized to monitor a home.

Establishing a smart home ecosystem can also be done with ease using Apple HomeKit, which is a very reliable and efficient DIY smart home security software. HomeKit equips homeowners with the ability to create a dynamic and affordable network of security-based devices. There are many industry leading products that are compatible with Apple’s innovative software. HomeKit assists home owners in creating a secure environment in a way that is both convenient and accessible.

It is often said that if one wants something done right, they should do it themselves. This is precisely the case regarding the creation of in-home security systems. DIY home security is significantly cheaper than professional installations and the ability to fully optimize a network of devices to fit a specific home environment gives DIY installation a major advantage. The accessibility and customization of security networks created with software such as Apple HomeKit makes IoT security systems much more powerful and reliable than professional installations.

IoT and Networking

By Nathan Rockershousen, Technical Writer/Marketing

The Internet of Things (IoT) has been revolutionary in changing the way consumers interact with the technological devices in their lives. The amount of users with IoT devices in their homes, cars, and even on their bodies is also growing at an increasing rate. It is clear that IoT technology is heavily integrated into the lives of many consumers. That being said, there has been a lot of media coverage regarding the security of these devices.

Security in modern technological devices is a critical feature and a very big concern for consumers due to the threat of being hacked. Properly encrypting IoT devices is very important because very personal information can be accessed through IoT devices. In addition to simply losing personal information, the physical safety of consumers is at risk. An example of this can be found in the 2014 Jeep incident. Hackers were able to infiltrate a Jeep Cherokee via the internet in order to send commands to the car’s entertainment system, brakes, steering, and even the transmission. Despite the fact that this happened a couple of years ago, the technology is still under the same risk of being hacked. Even the FBI has intervened and has begun to warn any car makers and owners that vehicles with high levels of internet access have an increased risk of being hacked. 

These security issues aren’t just affecting cars; these problems can be observed in a variety of other Internet-enabled devices. Another example is how connected baby monitors and other home monitoring devices are being tapped into by hackers, allowing them to see if anyone is home. Essentially any IoT device can be breached and used in an unintended way if proper security measures aren’t taken. When valuable data is at risk, security should be a bigger concern for manufacturers. The current and common culture among IoT companies is to release devices to this public with minimum protective measures in order to be the first to the market. Not all companies are a part of this culture, but a large portion of them contribute to these security issues. It’s not an issue of developers being unfamiliar with the intricacy of this high-end technology, it’s an issue of not taking the extra time to implement adequate security measures.

It is clear that having impeccable security features will benefit the consumer and the manufacturer in the long run. The invasive nature of IoT technology leaves the user very vulnerable to breaches in safety and security. The manufacturers should be responsible for monitoring the activity of their devices and determining how to block suspicious activity once the product is released. However, if security systems were developed in entirety before a device is released, these extra measures wouldn’t be as necessary. As IoT technology continues to become a bigger part of the lives of the consumers, it will be vital to our safety that a higher standard of security is implemented.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is continuing to grow at a rapid pace as more devices are becoming connected. However, the IoT is rendered useless without a system of networking to support it. As WiFi-enabled devices increase in popularity, the demand for networking will expand substantially. IoT-based technology is disrupting the current networking market due to vast amount of data that is collected and the quantity of devices connected to the Internet. Companies will be expected to have extremely efficient networks that will allow for real time analysis. In addition to this, simply having faster internet speeds and creating more access points is essential in supporting the rise of IoT devices.

One of the developing applications of IoT devices is found within the smart home. Some smart technology devices require extremely fast networks. When using multiple devices, it is critical to have a network that will enable the connectivity of all devices. The IoT enabled ConnectSense sensors and Smart Outlet rely on networking to enable machine-to-machine communication. Your ConnectSense products collect data through this communication in order to provide you with accurate and efficient analysis. Improving the ConnectSense cloud is one of the ways Grid Connect is able to help you adapt to the implementation of IoT devices in your home. Having a network that can sustain the connection of multiple devices is very important. Additional actions that can be taken in order to create a more efficient network are constructing quicker router speeds, ensuring that the WiFi is able to be accessed everywhere in the home, and creating an in-home network that can sustain multiple connections.

A strong network is essential for the use of various IoT products, whether it’s a smart home device, a piece of wearable technology, or even if it’s for an industrial application. Gateways, routers, and other networking devices can help improve networking abilities in order to support the demanding nature of connected and data driven devices. Finding a perfect network configuration will compensate for whatever quantity of data your IoT devices are bringing in.

It is clear that the impact the IoT is having on networking is only going to expand as the demand for a more connected and efficient world continues to increase. Having quality control of networks will allow for an improved customer experience.  Creating networks that can handle a great deal of traffic and data will allow you to be prepared for the IoT’s disruption of the networking market.

IoT Design Considerations: Cost

Connecting products to the Internet of Things (IoT) is essential to manufacturers looking to stay competitive within their industry. Adding IoT capabilities allows the manufacturer to stay connected with their customer, while discovering new product uses and applications that open them up to new revenue streams. However, these added benefits come with a cost. Connected devices come with a higher manufacturing overhead, but may also be sold with a bigger price tag.

Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections can be added to products for less than $10 in bill of materials costs. Other technologies, such as ZigBee, Z-Wave and Bluetooth, can be added for a lower price, but may require a separate bridge to connect to the Internet and access Cloud services.

To download the complete Internet of Things Design Considerations White Paper, click here.

A Case for the Functional Gateway

A gateway should be the most simple and obvious device that an everyday home automation user can find a use for. It should be a smart home user's first real experience with home automation and make them want to add more products to communicate with that gateway. While a typical gateway has no use other than to allow devices to communicate between devices and the Internet, a functional gateway is a product that a homeowner could use daily.

Read more at Embedded Computing Design or download the PDF now.